ricultural section of Knox county. F. A. Larson is the gentleman in question, and he is the owner of a fine farm on section two, township twenty-nine, range two, west, where he has a substantial home and is one of the most highly esteemed citizens of that region.
Mr. Larson was born in Sweden March 6, 1861, and was reared on his father's farm in that country until about the age of five years, when the family left their native land and took passage for America on a steamboat. After a, long and tedious voyage, they landed in New York, and went at once to Illinois. There the father worked at his trade of carpenter and later rented a farm in Henry county, Illinois, remaining there for about fifteen years. From there they came to Nebraska, locating in Burt county, where the father bought one hundred and sixty acres of land.
When Mr. F. A. Larson reached the age of twenty-five years he started out for himself, renting land for several years. He came to Knox county in 1891, and bought a quarter section of fair land on section two, township twenty-nine, range two, west, and this be intends to make his permanent home.
When Mr. Larson bought his place in Knox county, not an improvement had been made on it. The land was in a wild state and was purchased for twelve dollars and fifty cents per acre. Our subject has built a house, erected good barns, and fenced the farm. In 1910 Mr. Larson refused one hundred dollars per acre for his farm. He is engaged in general farming, raising cattle, hogs, grain and hay.
Mr. Larson is unmarried; his sister, Josephine, is his housekeeper. He is a member of the Swedish Lutheran church, and in politics is a republican.
ROBERT T. ROBINSON.
Robert T. Robinson, retired farmer, son of Henry and Sarah (Farmer) Robinson, was born in Indiana, February 13, 1838, and was fifth in a family of eleven children, who are all deceased excepting three: our subject, one brother, who resides in California, and a sister living in Utah. The father died May 16, 1872, in Fremont, Nebraska, and the mother in 1877, in Cedar Rapids. Nebraska.
At the age of sixteen Mr. Robinson went with his parents to Wisconsin engaging in farming, and on September 13, 1861, he was married to Rachel McClintick, also of Indiana, daughter of Hugh and Nancy (Steen) McClintick. Mrs. Robinson's mother died many years ago, and the father came to Nebraska to live with his daughter in 1890, where he died in 1893. She has a sister residing in Cedar Rapids, Nebraska.
In September, 1861, Mr. Robinson, enlisted in Company D, Eleventh Wisconsin Infantry, serving eighteen months, during which time he participated in the battle of Cotton Plant, Arkansas, and many minor engagements and skirmishes; and in February, 1863, he received his honorable discharge, after which he returned to Wisconsin and went to farming.
In 1871, Mr. Robinson came to Nebraska, locating in Fremont county for a few months, and in the spring of 1872 came to Boone county, homesteading one hundred and sixty acres of land in section eight, township eighteen, range seven, which is now a part of the city of Cedar Rapids. He lived on this homestead twenty-five years and then sold out, going to Oregon in 1897, expecting to make his home in that state, but returned to Boone county, Nebraska, within four months and purchased ten acres adjoining Cedar Rapids to the northwest where they lived until October, 1909, when they moved into Cedar Rapids and purchased a good home which is their present residence. Mr. Robinson was instrumental in organizing school district number six in the early days.
Mr. and Mrs. Robinson have had seven children born to them, whose names are as follows: Pryer B., who is married, has three children and lives in Cedar Rapids; Henry L., is married and has one son, and also lives in Cedar Rapids: Schuyler C., married, has six children and lives in Boone county; James A., is married, has two children and lives in Cedar Rapids; Clara, married S. S. Rohrer, died in 1899, and left one son; Euretta B., lives at home; and an infant deceased.
Mr. and Mrs. Robinson have passed through all the trying experiences and discouragements of pioneer life, and had trouble with the Indians, etc. During the three days' terrible storm in April, 1873, the family nearly perished. They were a family of nine living in a dugout of one room, snowed under and unable to get out for either wood or water, consequently had scarcely anything to eat, subsisting on two meals in three days. They also passed through the grasshopper siege and the years of drouth; but through all kept faith in Nebraska.
The family enjoy the respect and highest esteem of a large circle of friends and acquaintances, and are widely and favorably known.
Prominent among the successful agriculturists of Antelope county, Nebraska, is John Donner, who resides on section fourteen, township twenty-four, range seven, where he has a splendidly improved ranch and pleasant home. He has spent the past thirty-three years in this region and during that time has become a leader in the progress of the locality where he chose his home and where he has passed through many hard pioneer experiences.
Mr. Donner is a native of England, born February 25, 1844, in Lincolnshire county, Boston
village, and during his youth followed the occupation of farming in his native land. In 1866 Mr. Donner left his mother country, sailing for America on the steamship Kangaroo, and after landing in the United States settled in the state of Indiana, where he remained until 1868, then going to McHenry county, Illinois. In 1873 he returned to England, remaining one year, and again came to America, setting sail on the steamship "Idaho." Mr. Donner then came to Antelope county, Nebraska, in 1877, near Neligh, where he took a homestead claim. Here he built a dugout. Mr. Donner is one of the few old settlers who are still residing on their old original homestead farms. On this farm he has lived the better half of his life time, experiencing the different phases of life, enduring disappointments and hardships, and receiving his share of joy and sorrow. In the early days he suffered losses by the hot winds, etc., and one year lost four horses on account of not having proper feed for them. At one time, for protection he ploughed a fire line around his house and barn, and sodded up the sides of his house to protect it, and also to keep out the cold. In March, 1903, his house was burned to the ground, but he rebuilt and now has a very fine home. At the time of the fire, he was very fortunate in not losing any of his barns or other buildings.
Mr. Donner now owns one hundred and sixty acres of fine land, well improved, and which is known as the Fairview Farm. He is very much interested in several very fine Clydesdale brood mares which he owns.
Mr. Donner was united in marriage January 1, 1877, to Miss Ada Pethick. Mr. and Mrs. Donner are the parents of three children, named as follows: Clara, married Robert Polzfuss, and has two children; Annie and Katie. Mr. and Mrs. Donner and family are highly esteemed and respected by all who know them.
Alfred Amos is a member of a representative family of Custer county, Nebraska, one whose members have identified themselves with various measures for advancing the public welfare and prosperity. They are prominent in social circles and held in high respect and esteem. Mr. Amos was one of the very early settlers of the county and in his first years there met and overcame various discouragements and trials incident to pioneer life. He was born in Carroll county, Ohio, the eldest of seven children of John Mordecai and Catherine (Thompson) Amos. A sketch of the father also appears in this work. Mr. Amos first saw the light of day October 1, 1851, and grew to manhood on the farm in Ohio, being educated in nearby schools. He engaged in farming as a young man and has since followed that occupation. In 1882 he came west looking for a suitable place to locate permanently, and settled in Custer county, homesteading one hundred and sixty acres of land on section twenty-one, township eighteen, range eighteen.
Mr. Amos then returned to Iowa and on March 1, 1883, was united in marriage with Miss Carrie Carnall, who was born in Iowa. She is a daughter of James and Caroline (Nicholson) Carnall, natives of England, the father born in Lincolnshire and the mother in Essex. Mr. Carnall was educated in his native country and married in London, he and his wife coming to America in 1851 and locating in Fayette county, Iowa. He died in Arlington, Iowa, February 11, 1911, at the age of eighty-six years, and his widow now lives in the old home in Arlington, being now (1911) eighty-two years of age. Mrs. Amos has two brothers and a sister in Iowa; one brother in Mansfield, Missouri; one brother in California, and one brother in Colorado Springs.
Mr. and Mrs. Amos established their first home on the Custer county homestead, soon after marriage, remaining there twenty years. He and his wife each served several years as director of the school board of district number ten, she filling the office ten years. In 1903 they purchased three hundred and twenty acres of land on section twenty-one, township eighteen, range eighteen, which is still the home place. They have a well improved and equipped stock and grain farm and are successful and prosperous to a gratifying degree. They have eight children: Wayne L., of Custer county, married Esther Wooters, and they have one child; James Leland, also of Custer county, married Ida L. Bruner, who died March 30, 1911; Anna S., wife of Milton Copsey, lives near Westerville and has three children; Glenn A., Bert S., Catherine, Caroline and Edith Mildred, all at home. Catherine and Caroline are twins.
DANIEL B. SMITH.
Daniel B. Smith was born in Indiana, August 19, 1853, sixth child of Martin and Lucinda (Good) Smith, who were parents of three sons and four daughters. The father brought the family to Wisconsin when Daniel was a small child, and in 1861 enlisted in Company D, Eleventh Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. He died of sickness while in service, in 1863, his death occurring the day before the expiration of his term of enlistment; his discharge papers arrived the day after his death. The mother died the following year, and Daniel B., remained with an older sister until his sixteenth year. He then started out in life for himself and in April, 1868, set out for Nemaha county, Nebraska, he and a younger brother coming to the home of their uncle, S. J. Good. Daniel lived in Nemaha county until 1883, then came to Valley county. He has worked at farming since early manhood, beginning as a farm hand.
Mr. Smith was married March 4, 1874, to Miss Martha Williams, a native of Missouri, born near Springfield, in Cedar county, their union taking place in Nemaha county. When they came to Valley county they had four children. They bought one hundred and sixty acres of railroad land southwest of Ord in section nineteen, township eighteen, range fifteen, and pre-empted one hundred and sixty acres in section eighteen, adjoining, living on this farm until 1905, when Mr. Smith purchased two hundred and-seventy acres of land two miles north of Ord. At that time the place contained no improvements and he has developed and improved it until he now owns one of the finest grain and stock farms in his part of the state, with a comfortable home and other substantial buildings. He still owns the three hundred and twenty acre tract south of Ord, and has a dwelling in town to which to retire to when the time comes. He began life, a boy about fifteen years, without a dollar of money, and by his own efforts has now become one of the prosperous stockmen of central Nebraska. He may be rated among the early pioneers and helped materially in developing Valley county and bringing it to its present high standard of prosperity.
Mr. Smith and wife had eleven children and ten of them now survive: Olive, deceased; Frank, is a blacksmith of Rocky Ford, Colorado; Ethel, wife of Germain Hoyt, living near Garland, Missouri, has three children; Myrtle, wife of Ed. Thompson, of Valley county, Nebraska, has three children; Charlie, graduate of Boston Theological College, is a Methodist Episcopal minister, married and has one child; Lottie, married Harvey Friend, who lives in Valley county; Evet, Nina, Dora, Minnie and Mamie, all at home. The family are well known in social, educational and religious circles and have many friends. Mr. Smith, a republican in politics, held township offices some years ago, and has always done his full duty as a citizen. The family worship in the Methodist Episcopal church.
For four years they lived in the primitive sod house and then replaced it with a more modern edifice.
Mr. Smith's present home is one of the most pretentious country houses in the county and we are pleased to call attention to a view of the home and surroundings elsewhere in this work.
Although a comparatively recent settler in Pierce county, Nebraska, the gentleman whose name heads this personal history is well and favorably known to the residents of this part of the country.
Mr. Hoeppner was born in the village of Bellin, Holstein, then a province of Denmark, September 29, 1853, and he is the son of Christ and Margareta (Paulstin) Hoeppner, also natives of Denmark, the father following the occupation of farmer in that country, where he died October 1, 1872, at the age of fifty-one years. The mother followed our subject to America one year after his arrival here, he setting sail from Hamburg when about nineteen years of age, on the steamboat "Silesia," and after a voyage of nine days landed in New York. Mr. Hoeppner went directly to Scott county, Iowa, where he worked on a farm six years, and for one year cultivated fifty acres of rented land. In 1879, he went to Tama county, Iowa, and bought eighty acres, on which he lived until coming to Pierce county, Nebraska, in 1901. Here he bought a farm of two hundred and forty acres from John Hamer out of the south half of section twenty-five, township twenty-eight, range two, his present home. He is a good farmer and has a well improved farm. He suffered loss by hail in 1905, losing on his own and rented land one hundred and seventy acres of corn and seventy acres of oats - a severe blow to him at that time.
On February 4, 1881, Mr. Hoeppner was married to Miss Emelia Goettsch, a native of Scott county, Iowa, her parents, Joachin and Margarite (Lamp) Goettsch, were old settlers of Scott county, Iowa, where they followed farming, having lived there since 1860. The father had been a sailor in the old country from 1851 until 1860, when he came to America. He married in Davenport, which was only a "mud hole" when Mrs. Goettsch's parents first settled there when she was a girl in her teens. They were eight weeks on the voyage crossing the ocean. Mr. Goettsch was employed manufacturing handmade shingles for a time, and for five years before marriage worked on the railroad section.
Nine children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Hoeppner, seven of whom are living: Louis, Alma, Alfreda, who is now Mrs. Carl Shubert; Adelia, Lillie, Herbert and Edna.
Mr. Hoeppner votes the democratic ticket, and is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America and Sons of Herman lodges. He and his family worship at the German Lutheran church, and hold the respect of all who know them.
A view of Mr. Hoeppner's home, with its fine grove of ornamental evergreens, is to be seen on another page.
BENJAMIN M. JONES.
Benjamin M. Jones, former sheriff of Pierce county, Nebraska, now retired from farming, resides in the east part of Plainview. He first came to this state in 1889, landing in Pierce county on the seventh day of February, and has been a loyal supporter of the best interests of this section since that time.
Mr. Jones is a native of St. Joseph, Indiana, born August 22, 1860, and is a son of Milton and Margaret (Aikens) Jones, both born and reared
in Ohio. The former is of Welsh origin, his ancestors coming to the colonies long before the revolutionary war, settling in Virginia, and his grandmother was a cousin of the famous Robert E. Lee.
Ben remained with his parents on their Indiana farm until he reached his majority, then left home and obtained a position as fireman on the Baltimore & Ohio railway, running between Chicago, Illinois, and Chicago Junction, Ohio, continuing at that work for two years. He was afterwards employed at various things, becoming thoroughly familiar with farm implements and their values, and on coming to Nebraska in 1889, he at once entered the employ of I. W. Alter, of Plainview, remaining with him for two years. He then traveled for various firms for nine years, making all the principal towns of Iowa and Minnesota, and was very successful in bringing business to his firm.
In the fall of 1901 Mr. Jones was elected sheriff of Pierce county, serving up to January 1, 1906, having been re-elected to the office by an increased majority. His positive refusal to accept a third term was all that prevented his nomination and consequent election, and in June after the close of his second term, he fitted up a large wagon containing all the conveniences for camping, and started across the country to Denver in the hope of improving his wife's impaired health. They spent some months in the open, following the Platte rivers to that place. Mrs. Jones, who was Ella J. Peed, was married August 18, 1900, died in Colorado in February, 1907, leaving two fine, bright boys, Reed M. and Wayne B. The former was an unusually precocious child, learning to read and write at the age of four years, and both are advancing in their studies much beyond the average child of their age.
Mr. Jones was again married, on June 1, 1908, to Miss Anna Peed, who is a sister of his former wife, and this was a most admirable match in every way, as no one could so well fill the place of his children's mother, or take a greater interest in their welfare.
Mr. Jones is a staunch democrat, and has always commanded a large vote from the opposition, owing to his straightforward character and honesty of purpose in all matters. While holding the office of sheriff, Mr. Jones' books and accounts were always open to the most critical inspection, and he proved a most worthy and efficient official. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias and Ancient Order of United Workmen of Plainview.
W. S. FREEMAN.
The above gentleman is the possessor of a finely developed farm consisting of one hundred and sixty acres in Spring Creek precinct, which he has fitted with good buildings and every improvement in the way of machinery, etc., and is known as a successful agriculturalist who for the past many years has been prominent in all affairs of his county and state.
W. S. Freeman was born in Potter county, Pennsylvania, on November 27, 1853, and grew up in that locality, coming to Howard county with his parents in 1871. The father, William E. Freeman, is a native of New York state, born December 5, 1829, and was married in Potter county, Pennsylvania, about 1850, to Sarah L. Cushing. They remained in the east up to 1870, at that time coming to Nebraska, their first location being Columbus, where they spent several months, then came on to Howard county and filed on a pre-emption on section eight, township fifteen, range nine. The village of Cushing is located on a portion of this land which was for many years their home farm. Mrs. Sarah Freeman's death occurred August 24, 1905. During his residence in this section, William E. Freeman became one of the leading business men of the county. He was also one of the pioneer merchants, having for many years been engaged in the general mercantile business in different towns, and in addition to this was extensively engaged in farming nearly all of the time. He went through all the old Howard county experiences, and during the early days of his residence here, was obliged to haul the lumber for his first dwelling from Hastings. After the death of his wife Mr. Freeman moved to California, where he makes his home with a daughter, Mrs. Carrie F. Doyle. There were four children in the family, W. S. Freeman, whose name heads this review, Carrie, mentioned above, Oscar H., of California, and Minnie, now Mrs. Penny, who lives in Fullerton. During the famous Nebraska blizzard of January 12, 1888, Mrs. Penny became known as "the, Nebraska heroine," as it was through her efforts that the children of the school in which she was teaching, were saved from perishing in the terrible storm of that date by being tied together with twine and by her guided to the nearest settler's house, three-quarters of a mile away.
W. S. Freeman was married in Scotia, Nebraska, on August 31, 1876, to Mary A. Scott, who is a native of Kentucky and came to Greeley county, Nebraska, in 1871, where her parents, Samuel C. and Caroline (Raydure) Scott, were prominent pioneers, she being the eldest of five daughters. Her mother and father, also two sisters, are now deceased, while two sisters still live in Greeley county. Mr. and Mrs. Freeman have one child, Winnie B., a charming young lady, who is at home with them, and they have a pleasant home and large circle of friends.
JACOB B. WILLIAMS.
Jacob B. Williams, son of Daniel P. and Lucinda (Scrivens) Williams, was born in Watson, Lewis county, New York, October 14, 1853, and
was seventh in a family of eight children; he has one brother residing in Boulder, Colorado; one sister, Mrs. Elizabeth L. Green, in North Loup, Nebraska; another sister in New York state, and the others are deceased. The Williams family are descendants of Roger Williams, Jacob B. Williams being of the seventh generation; his father was born in New York state, where he died in 1876; the mother was a native of the Empire state also, but died in Valley county, Nebraska, her death occurring January 1, 1888.
Mr. Williams received the usual educational advantages in the home schools, and later was a student at Alfred University in Allegheny county, New York, and later engaged in farming.
On March 15, 1876, Mr. Williams was united in marriage to Miss Mary S. Babcock, at the home of her parents, Leander and Roxina (Williams) Babcock, in Brookfield, New York. Miss Babcock was born in Lewis county, New York, and was a teacher in the schools of New York and Nebraska. Mr. and Mrs. Williams have had no children, but have one adopted daughter, Sadie W., who is the wife of Roy S. Cox; they reside in Valley county, and have two children, a daughter and a son.
In March of 1879 Mr. Williams came to Nebraska, locating in Clay county, purchasing eighty acres of Burlington & Missouri railroad land, living on the same for seven years. In 1886 he came to Valley county and purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land near North Loup, which remained the home place for nineteen years. In 1895, owing to in health, Mr. Williams retired from the farm, which he sold after moving to North Loup, purchasing a good home where he now lives. Since 1896 he has been engaged in the real estate business. He is a successful man of affairs, and owns one hundred and seventy-two acres of land in Texas, as well as splendid Nebraska farm and city property.
Mr. and Mrs. Williams are among the earlier settlers of this part of Nebraska, and are widely and favorably known. Mr. Williams has served as director and treasurer at different times of school district number forty-two for some years.
Mrs. Williams' father, Leander Babcock, was of English descent, born in Madison county, New York, and died February 15, 1881, in his native land. Her mother, Mrs. Roxana (Williams) Babcock, was of Welsh descent, born in Brookfield, New York, where she died November 23, 1895.
Fred Schoepflin, one of the old settlers of Nebraska, where he chose his home in the early days, occupies a good home and valuable property in section twenty-eight, township twenty-one, range three, Madison county, has aided immeasurably in the upbuilding of his locality, and is well known throughout this part of the county.
Mr. Schoepflin was born near the river Rhine, Germany, October 17, 1844. His parents were farmers and butchers, and he worked on the home place as a boy, following farming continuously during his youth.
When he was just twenty years of age he left the mother country and crossed the sea to America, of which country he had heard wondrous tales regarding the wealth to be accumulated by those who were willing to work and endure. He sailed from Havre in the month of January, and after a voyage lasting sixty days, the sailboat on which he was a steerage passenger, landed safely in New York City. He first located in Illinois, making his home in Kane county for four years, then came west to Nebraska in 1871, traveling by rail to Columbus, and from there drove to the vicinity of his present homestead, where he filed on a tract of land and started to develop a farm. He has built and worn out two sod houses since coming here, finally erecting a comfortable frame dwelling, his present home.
During the first few years in this region, Mr. Schoepflin went through all the hardships incident to the life of the pioneers here, suffering crop failures, and losses by prairie fires, which he fought for days together with his neighbors in an effort to save their property from destruction. In those days the hunting of big game was about the only sport, and deer, antelope and other wild animals were seen in plenty on the plains.
Mr. Schoepflin's holdings now comprise a finely cultivated farm of one hundred and sixty acres, all fenced, and supplied with a complete set of buildings, well stocked, and is one of the valuable estates in Madison county.
In June, 1874, Mr. Schoepflin was united in marriage to Miss Dora Bolenski, who is a native of Prussia. They had one child, Amanda, who was married to John Weber, a German Lutheran minister. She died in 1905.
CHARLES E. BLAKEMAN.
Charles E. Blakeman is one of the best known farmers and stock men of Custer county, where he was one of the early settlers. He makes a specialty of raising shorthorn cattle, in which line he is very successful, being one of the largest landholders of central Nebraska. Mr. Blakeman was born in Lake county, Indiana, November 28, 1856, and was the third in order of birth of the five children of John and Lucinda (Williams) Blakeman, the father a native of England and the mother of Ohio. He has one sister, Mrs. Charles Hipsley, in Broken Bow, Nebraska, and another sister living in Indiana. John Blakeman came to America when about twenty years of age and located first in Ohio, but later removed to Indiana, which is now his home. He enlisted in an Indiana regiment for service in the civil war. His wife died in Indiana in the fifties.
In boyhood Charles Blakeman attended the
public schools of Indiana, and as a young man, spent four years at railroad work in Chicago. In June, 1884, he removed to Saunders county, Nebraska, and on February 3, 1885, in Omaha, was united in marriage with Josephine Teeple, who was born in Indiana, daughter of Phillip and Margaret (Pringle) Teeple, natives of Canada. The mother died in Canada in 1865 and the father now lives in North Dakota. Mrs. Blakeman has two brothers in Hammond, Indiana. After marriage Mr. and Mrs. Blakeman came to Custer county and secured a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres on the northwest quarter of section six, township seventeen, range twenty-three, which was the home place for several years. Mr. Blakeman was very helpful in the organization of school district number two hundred and forty one, and has served as a member of its board most of the time since. He and his wife were among the first settlers on West Table and for many years were unable to strike water for locating a well, so had to haul water from a distance. They have six children: John P., Howard, Homer C., Wallace E., Otto C. and Bessie B., all at home except Howard.
After passing through years of privation and hardship, Mr. Blakeman achieved a notable degree of success in his farming operations. He has in his possession twenty-three hundred and seventy-five acres of land, of which twenty-two hundred and fifteen acres are in the home place, which is one of the best equipped farms in his part of the state. He has some fine shorthorn cattle and a number of high bred horses and has one thousand acres under cultivation. The family stand well in the opinion of their neighbors and have a wide circle of friends.
The present condition of prosperity of Nebraska as an agricultural and commercial region is due to the earnest efforts and perseverance of the early settlers and pioneers, who came to the state while it was in an undeveloped condition. Among the citizens of Cedar county who have long been identified with the best interests of that county may be mentioned Fred Zimmerman, who has lived there the past eighteen years. He has brought his farm to a high state of cultivation and productiveness, and has won the respect and good will of all who have come into contact with him. He purchased his present farm on section twenty-four, township twenty-nine, range one, east, in 1893, and has made the improvements himself. He devotes it to general farming and has reaped a fair measure of success in his operations.
Mr. Zimmerman is a native of Switzerland, born in 1858, son of John and Elizabeth Zimmerman, both also natives of that country. He received his education in his native country and there reached maturity. He came to America in 1881 and spent the next six years in Iowa. In 1887 he removed to Kansas and in 1893 to Cedar county, his home since that time. He has proven himself an ambitious and able farmer and the farm which he has purchased bears witness to his thrift and industry. His place is pleasantly located in a desirable section of the state.
Mr. Zimmerman was married April 4, 1887, to Dora Ardesen, a native of Switzerland, and daughter of Leonard and Elizabeth (Miller) Ardesen. Four children have blessed this union, namely: John, deceased; Fred, George and Christian J., who died in 1911.
The family is identified with the Reformed Lutheran church, and Mr. Zimmerman is an independent republican.
DAVID H. BURKE.
David H. Burke was born in Potsdam, Saint Lawrence county, New York, June 28, 1861, and was eldest of eight children in the family of William and Mary (Carten) Burke, who had five sons and three daughters.
Mr. Burke came into Merrick county, Nebraska, with his father in May, 1877. He was married to Miss Mary J. Farrell in the Catholic church at Central City, Nebraska, October 24, 1884. Four children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Burke, three of whom are living: Edmund Victor, married, has one child and resides at Chapman, Nebraska; Mary, deceased; John, and Aline, who reside at home.
Mr. Burke was a conductor in the employ of the Union Pacific railroad from 1880 to 1885, inclusive, with headquarters at Rawlins, Wyoming. He now resides on the northwest quarter of section seventeen, township thirteen, range six, where he has a fine farm of one hundred and sixty-one acres, and deals in cattle, making a specialty of short horn cattle and Duroe Jersey hogs.
Mr. Burke has served as district supervisor in past years; on the school board at different times; and has always been active and doing in the best interests of his community.
WILL A. NEEDHAM.
Will A. Needham, postmaster of Bloomfield, and at one time member of the firm of Needham Brothers, journalists, is a native of Nebraska, his birth occurring March 19, 1869, in a sod house on the family homestead within one and one-half miles of the present site of the state house at Lincoln. His parents, H. E. and Lucina (Bagley) Needham, natives of Monkton, Vermont, and Independence, Ohio, respectively, migrated from Cleveland to Fremont county, Iowa, in 1859, settling near Tabor, and in March, 1867, becoming residents of Lancaster county, Nebraska, cross-
ing the Missouri river at Wabanse Mills the first day of the month. The father took up a homestead at Lancaster Center, now Lincoln, and made this his home until 1876, when he moved to Daviess county, Missouri, settling near Kidder.
Here Will A. Needham spent his youth, attending the Cameron schools until 1886, when he came to Colridge to join his brother, W. H. Needham. He taught school for several years, receiving the first year twenty-five dollars a month and later forty dollars, a generous salary for those days. During vacations he learned printing, and in 1887 entered into a partnership with his brother Whitfield H., and purchased the "Colridge Sentinel." This same firm established the "Bloomfield Monitor" in 1890, and when his brother took over the "Niobrara Tribune," in the fall of 1895, Will A. became the sole proprietor of the "Monitor," of which he was the editor and publisher until his appointment as postmaster of Bloomfield in December, 1897, taking possession of the office the first of January, 1898.
Mr. Needham was married in Niobrara January 25, 1895, to Miss Mattie J. Kamrar, who was born in Clinton county, Iowa. Her parents, David J. and Susan J. (Muntz) Kamrar, are natives of Pennsylvania. The father served several terms as deputy county treasurer, and is now residing in the south part of Cherry county, where he owns a large ranch. Mr. and Mrs. Needham are the parents of four children, Fern G., Vernon W., Mildred H. and Paul I.
Mr. Needham has always been a republican in political beliefs, and his journals have always been hearty supporters of the candidates of his party when standing for election. He is high up in Masonic circles, holding membership in the blue lodge, chapter, council, and commandery, and has been the presiding officer of each. He has been an officer of the Grand Commandery five years, and is now grand senior warden of the latter body, with reasonable certainty of filling the presiding chair, should he live a few years more. He also affiliates with the Modern Woodmen of America, holding membership in the Bloomfield lodge.
Mr. Needham recalls the time when Lincoln was a small village, and when deer and antelope were to be seen near the city. At one time, a party of six hundred Indians camped near his father's house. He has been a resident of Bloomfield since its organization, and served as first village clerk, and he was president of the village board when the town organized as a city of the second class. He was, during his incumbency, instrumental in building the excellent water system of the town. He has always taken a great interest in the schools, and has served for many years on the board of education, and the new school house was planned and built during his membership of that body.
Mr. Needham has traveled extensively over the west, having made several trips to the Pacific coast; he is thoroughly in touch with the western spirit and western ideas in politics. He has great faith in the achievements of the west, and full confidence in its future prosperity and influence.
Mr. Schultze belongs to that goodly number of hardy Teutons who have contributed of their brawn and muscle to the reclamation of the Nebraska prairies, and put their character and stamina into the making of a great state.
The subscriber is a native of Brandenburg, Germany, and was born in 1859 to Carl and Wilhelmina Schultze. His father was a wagonmaker. He (the father) being the youngest of seven boys, the other six having all served in war, was exempt from service. His father (grandfather of our subscriber), however, served in several of the continental wars.
Mr. Schultze spent his childhood years in his native land, but in 1869, with his parents, came to New York from Bremen. They came to Nebraska at once, and the father took up a homestead in Stanton county. He first put up a dugout which served the family as a home for nine years. This was in time replaced by a log house.
The first few years on the new farm were not entirely sunshine, for the family suffered the usual hardships which assailed the pioneer. Prairie fires were frequent in summer and were a constant menace to the settlers. Many times they were compelled to fight fires for hours in order to save their homes from destruction. They had one consolation, however, in knowing that they came too late to suffer the three or four years destruction of crops which the older settlers had to contend with.
In 1884, our subscriber was united in marriage to Miss Frederick Lenser, of West Prussia. They are the parents of seven children, all of whom are living. They are named as follows: Paul, Amil, Carl, Arthur, Christ, Adelheid and Regina.
Mr. Schultze is a man of wide experience and well merits his success as a farmer.
J. W. RICKERT.
J. W. Rickert, an early settler and highly respected citizen of Antelope county, Nebraska, has fought his way through many difficulties and discouragements to a very substantial success. He is a man of keen perception and executive ability, and has proven his good citizenship in many ways. He is the owner of a good farm in section thirty, township twenty-seven, range six, owning two hundred acres of good land and seven acres of fine trees. Mr. Rickert is a native of Illinois, born May 15, 1854, and is the son of William and Anna Kieler Rickert, the father dying at the age of twenty-three years when our subject was but one year old; the mother was born in Illinois, her father being a merchant.
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